Coco Gauff is now the youngest American US Open champion since Serena Williams in 1999. At her post match interview she spoke about how it was an honor to follow in the footsteps of Serena and Venus, Naomi Osaka, Althea Gibson and Sloane Stephens by winning the US Open. Coco Gauff’s journey to success in the world of professional tennis is nothing short of extraordinary. Her story is not only one of immense talent but also a testament to hard work, determination, and the unwavering support of her family.
Coco’s tennis journey began at a very young age, inspired by her father, Corey Gauff, who was a basketball player at Georgia State University. Recognising her talent, he introduced her to tennis at the age of six. She quickly displayed a natural aptitude for the sport, and her family made significant sacrifices to nurture her potential, including relocating to Florida, where she could train at the renowned Patrick Mouratoglou Academy (Serena’s coach).
As her professional career continued to flourish, Coco Gauff’s marketability skyrocketed. Her impressive performance on the court and her poise off it caught the attention of corporate sponsors eager to align themselves with her image of youth, talent, and potential. Some of her notable brand partnerships and endorsements include:
New Balance: In 2019, Coco Gauff signed a multi-year endorsement deal with New Balance after beating Nike in a bidding war. The partnership not only provided her with top-quality tennis gear but also made her one of the brand’s prominent athletes. She became the youngest US Open champion wearing the New Balance CG 1, the only signature shoe in women’s tennis.
Head: Coco Gauff became an ambassador for Head, a renowned sports equipment company specializing in tennis racquets. Her endorsement of Head products speaks to her skill and influence in the tennis world.
Barilla: In a move beyond the tennis court, Coco Gauff signed an endorsement deal with Barilla, the Italian food company known for its pasta and other food products. Her partnership with Barilla showcases her versatility as a brand ambassador beyond the sports realm.
Rolex: Coco Gauff’s association with Rolex, one of the most prestigious watch brands globally, reflects her emergence as a symbol of excellence and aspiration. Her elegance and grace both on and off the court align with the brand’s values.
Tennis endorsement contracts are layered with bonuses for on-court performance and world rankings. Her win Saturday was worth $3 million in prize money and seven figures in sponsor bonuses. There are also retainer escalators in the case of Grand Slam wins. Gauff will easily clear $10 million from sponsors in 2023. She had won $5.5 million in career prize money entering 2023, but her victory on Saturday has pushed that total to $11.1 million.
These endorsements not only bring significant financial benefits but also enhance Gauff’s global profile. She has used her platform to promote causes close to her heart, including social justice issues, education, and access to sports for underprivileged children. Her commitment to making a positive impact on society resonates with her sponsors and further solidifies her appeal as a role model.
Coco Gauff’s story of success is still unfolding, and as she continues to make her mark in the tennis world, her brand partnerships and endorsements are likely to grow in both number and value. Just like how Serena and Venus inspired her to dream big and follow in their footsteps, she also serves as an inspiration to many and also a beacon of hope for aspiring athletes. She is a testament to what can be achieved with hard work and unwavering determination.
This article was written by – Subomi